March 22, 2004

Focal Points of the Camino - God


The third focal point is God. The Camino is not just something that is similar to our daily life. If it were just that, it would not be so successful. The Camino is not just any space, it is a sacred space, a symbolic space. this is its most treasured essence, its hidden secret.

God communicates with humans in many ways: through nature, events, and from within.

Mother Nature is also involved in this sacred conspiracy. When the pilgrim observes the imposing gorges of Canfranc or the deep valleys of the Bierzo, the fields of Castilla, the vineyards of La Rioja, the storms that roar, the snow on the Pyrenees, the streams of Galicia, the planted fields in spring, the woods in autumn, the birds that sing, the magnificent dawns and sunsets of the Camino…he is touched by the beauty and begins to identify with the trees, the smell of the rain, the insects, the shape of stones, the color of the flowers because the pilgrim begins to feel connected to everything, part of everything. He feels in tune and harmony with creation. Then the questions begin: Creation? Who? Why? And he ends up praising the Creator, giving thanks for so many gifts, realizing that everything is a free expression of God’s love.

Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” On the Camino the pilgrim learns to discover that things and, especially, people are filled with the Creator and life becomes an encounter with God.

That is the spiritual dimension of life: find and love God in all things.

And then there is solitude and silence. Once the pilgrim has stopped thinking about his home he left, the people he sees every day, his job, his daily life, he begins to go within himself, to remain silent longer, silence of words and heart, emptying his strength and, without realizing it, allowing the Spirit to work freely.

Our notions of time and space are also broken down since they stop being linear, physical, and measurable. It is a space and a time when Divinity has chosen to manifest itself to all who step on its edges.

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